The LGBT+ Working Party of the National Pensioners’ Convention has issued a statement on the government’s decision to disband its LGBT advisory panel.
Speaking on behalf of the Working Party, NPC General Secretary Jan Shortt said:
“We deplore the decision to dissolve the LGBT Advisory Panel, established by the previous Conservative Prime Minister Theresa May to ‘advise ministers on issues and policies concerning lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people’.”
“The decision could not have come at a worse time for the country’s 1.5 million LGBT+ pensioners’ as many face increased isolation and loneliness because of the Covid -19 pandemic.
“Discrimination against LGBT+ retirees in the provision of Social Housing, Adult Social Care and End of Life Care remains a huge concern. A recent study by Age UK into the mental health of LGBT+ Pensioners has shown that many suffer from increased mental health problems impacted by years and years of prejudice and discrimination.
“There has been an increase in the number of LGBT+ people living in poverty, and a recent National LGBT Survey found that in the previous 12 months only 63% of trans people surveyed were employed. There are also particular concerns about the rights of black and Asian LGBT+ pensioners, with Hate Crime against LGBT+ people on the rise.
“For all of these reasons and many more, we would urge the Government to think again about disbanding the LGBT Advisory Panel. We would certainly view any announcement of a new body that does not include consideration of LGBT + rights in the UK - and International LGBT Rights – as part of its remit to be a betrayal of Theresa May’s commitment to establishing the LGBT Advisory Panel, and a betrayal of the UK’s one million plus LGBT+ pensioners.”